We're living in freedom of speech community. However when writing controversial books, are there any topics which are not allowed to write about in First World countries (even for educational purposes)? How do you know when you cross the line?

One example could be Uncle Fester books or WikiLeaks which are the borderlines I think. Are there any other examples?

  • 4
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is about freedom (of speech) and not Free/Libre/Open content. Or differently put, Free as opposed to proprietary.
    – overactor
    Aug 21, 2015 at 11:52
  • This question would likely be a better fit over at Law, but might already have been answered there. I'm not a contributing member over there, so I wouldn't know.
    – overactor
    Aug 21, 2015 at 11:54
  • If our site is going to change to Free/Libre/Open (with broader scope), I don't see how this is off-topic. Which simple asks which topics are not allowed for open access Libre resource (such as e-book), but the same could apply to source code.
    – kenorb
    Aug 21, 2015 at 11:57
  • 2
    This appears to be a question about criminal law; can you get busted for publishing a bomb-building manual. FLO(ss) seems wildly beside the point.
    – bmargulies
    Aug 21, 2015 at 12:13
  • 1
    I think that questions about the interaction of FLO with other things, including laws, are on-topic, inasmuch as they can be answered by a non-lawyer
    – lofidevops
    Aug 21, 2015 at 12:52

1 Answer 1


FLO licenses take a legal, copyright-restricted-by-default work, and give you permission to copy, modify and/or distribute that work. They would not take precedence over criminal law in your country, including laws that criminalise or restrict publication and distribution of certain materials.

  • 1
    An interesting side-effect could be that they give someone else the rights to publish your book elsewhere. This might just fulfill the original goal of getting the book published. Aug 22, 2015 at 9:36

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